HC Deb 24 May 1966 vol 729 cc302-34

Motion made, and Question proposed, That this House, at its rising on Friday, do adjourn till Monday, 13th June.—[Mr. Bowden.]

4.8 p.m.

Mr. Michael Foot (Ebbw Vale)

There are a few considerations which I should like to put to the House before this Motion is passed. I fully realise that it is a serious inconvenience for the House when it has this discussion on the Adjournment for Whitsun or for other Recesses because the discussion is bound to interfere with the debate on the subsequent Bills. However, the arrangement of the business of the House is not my affair. I am not responsible for it. I am not one of the usual channels and I have no aspiration to become one. Therefore, if, unfortunately, the matter which is to be debated later—which I fully support —has to be debated somewhat later still because of my intervention and that of possibly some of my hon. Friends in this earlier debate, that cannot be helped.

There are some considerations which I believe the House should take into account before it passes this Motion and some undertakings which we ought to seek from the Government.

First, no one can deny that the House is debating the Motion for the Adjournment for the Whitsun Recess in extremely peculiar circumstances, circumstances which everyone in the House deplores and which affect the economy of the nation and arise from the strike situation. There are many of us on this side of the House who believe that the seamen have an extremely powerful case which has not been fully taken into account by the rest of the nation, or by the Government.

However, I understand that on Thursday we shall have a full opportunity to debate this situation. Therefore, I do not propose to discuss that matter, although if we had not had Thursday's debate on the emergency powers, it would have been necessary to discuss the seamen's strike very fully now. Indeed, there may be some hon. Members who take that view.

I hope that by Thursday the Government may have been able to take some further initiative to bring pressure on the shipowners in a manner which has not yet been brought upon them to make their contribution to settling this extremely serious situation. That is why I propose to say on that subject only that we will have a full opportunity to debate the matter on Thursday,but that I hope that by then the Government and the shipowners will have taken sufficient action to enable a move towards a settlement to take place.

There are other matters which we would have every right to press and which some hon. Members may wish to press. There is the extremely serious situation in Southern Africa, the developments taking place with the talks with the Southern Rhodesian authorities. Nobody knows exactly what is happening in those discussions, nor do we know what is happening in the discussions with President Kaunda, of Zambia. I hope that before Thursday the Government will be able to make to the House a statement on this aspect of these matters. I realise the difficulties.

Personally, I cannot see that there is any possibility of a compromise between the Government here and the authorities in Southern Rhodesia. Our Government went to extreme lengths to make concessions before U.D.I., in November, and may have made further proposals since. But it would be quite wrong for us to go further. I am not making any suggestion that we should press that, but if the Government could give us a statement on that subject, it would be extremely helpful.

However, there is a further major reason why I have sought to discuss this Motion. It affects an issue which I believe to be of paramount importance throughout the world and which affects all the policies of the Government and the whole development of the world, a question about which there may be serious developments within the next two weeks while the House is adjourned. I refer, of course, to the situation in Vietnam.

At the beginning of this Parliament, many of us on this side of the House put down an Amendment to the Gracious Speech, because we did not support that aspect of Government policy and wished to state our view about it quite explicitly at the beginning of the Session. I must say that the intervening events have not allayed our qualms in any degree. All the statements we have had from the Government, including the statement from the Foreign Secretary yesterday, which referred directly to events which might occur in the next fortnight, have been extremely unsatisfactory to many of us.

That is why we are right to press this issue now, partly because we think that the Government's attitude is unsatisfactory, but also because we think that fresh developments may take place in Vietnam during this period and that in the next fortnight it is possible, while the House is adjourned, that the whole tragedy of Vietnam will rise to its most dangerous climax.

To substantiate what I say, I take the reply of the Foreign Secretary in the House yesterday to a question which I put to him. I asked him whether the Government still support the bombing of North Vietnam by the American Air Force and whether they have sought to impose any limits on that bombing in the last few weeks apart from the earlier limitation the Government sought to the bombing about Hanoi and Haiphong. The reply given by the Foreign Secretary was: The position there is as it has been, and what we want to see is the end of all military activity by both sides in this war, but I do not believe that it is right, while one side refuses negotiations, to tell the other side that they should refrain from certain military measures. As to the extent of the bombing, we have been informed and are still informed by the United States that if there were any change in their policy in that respect we should be consulted first."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 23rd May, 1966; Vol. 729, c. 14.] I leave aside any argument as to whether the Government's position is as stated in that reply. What the Government have done is to give support to one side in its act of violence in Vietnam while denouncing acts of violence by the other side. That is the complaint of some of us.

However, I come to the second part of the right hon. Gentleman's reply which I have just quoted. If there is to be any change in United States policy in the scale of its bombing in North Vietnam, or carrying it nearer to the cities of Hanoi and Haiphong, or if the Americans were to decide greatly to intensify the bombing generally, the British Government would be consulted in either case. That is a clear reading of what my right hon. Friend said.

If that is the case, it is possible that in the next fortnight the British Government will be consulted about whether they agree with further measures to be taken by the Americans in Vietnam. Many hon. Members follow the extremely able reports which are given by the Washington correspondent of The Times who, only a week ago, was saying that the crisis of decision was arising in Vietnam, as he believed, and that it might be that within a very short period the Americans would be deciding either greatly to intensify the bombing, or to multiply their forces in Vietnam, or augment them greatly, that is, raising them from a figure of about 250,000 to 500,000. It is, therefore, quite possible that this decision will be taken by the Americans while the House is adjourned and, according to the Government's own statement to the House, the Government would be consulted before the Americans took any such step.

I would like the Leader of the House to tell us, first, whether I have accurately summarised the Government's view and that it is absolutely clear that if there should be such an intensification of the war, the British Government would be consulted. Secondly, I should like to know what will be the Government's answer when they are so consulted. We understand that their answer, when they were asked whether they would agree to the bombing of Hanoi and Haiphong, was, according to the statement which they have made on numerous occasions, that they were opposed to that. Presumably, if that request is made by the Americans to the British Government again in the next fortnight, the Government will still say that they are as opposed to that as ever.

Of course, many of us are not satisfied by that. We want to stop the bombing of North Vietnam altogether, as one of the steps which we believe could possibly help to lead to the settlement we all desire. Therefore, we also want to know what would be the answer of the Government to the consultations which the Americans are pledged to initiate, according to this statement about the intensification of the bombing in Vietnam?

In all the reports appearing in the American papers, we are told that the American Government are considering whether they should go in for a large, intensified, bombing campaign. Some of the reports indicate that the intensification of the bombing has already started, although that is difficult to square with the statement made by the Foreign Secretary to the House, because if there had been a great intensification of the bombing he would presumably have reported to the House and told us what was his attitude.

I hope that the Government are opposed to any such intensification, and that if they are consulted about it they would say no. Better still, I hope that they will take the initiative. In view of these discussions which are obviously taking place in the United States, and which may determine the whole outcome of the Vietnam war, and future development in South-East Asia, I trust that the Government will be able to tell us today that they are prepared to initiate discussions with the United States Government to impress upon that Government that we are opposed to the intensification of the war in that sense.

Before we agree to this Motion, we should get a statement from the Government which goes further than that given to us yesterday by the Foreign Secretary, although that statement, as I underline afresh, makes it quite clear that the British Government would be consulted if the American Government were to make a further intensification of the bombing of North Vietnam. As a result, this House and the people of the country are directly implicated in this affair. It is no good people saying that it is only the Americans who are involved. We now have the situation, which has been explained quite clearly to us by the Government, that we had made our intervention in such a sense that we have insisted upon the right to be consulted in certain circumstances. It might be that in the next fortnight the essential consultations will take place.

Let the Government tell us now. I believe that it would produce a heartfelt sense of relief throughout the country if the Government, before we depart for the Recess, said that they would not give their support to any intensification of the bombing, that they were looking for a different outcome to the war, and were not prepared to give full, complete, and unqualified support to American military action, which has been the policy of the Government hitherto. If we could have such a change by the Government it would cause not merely a heartfelt sense of relief, but it would be a step towards securing the kind of settlement which everyone wishes to achieve.

There is another reason why this situation is so tense and why the critical decision about Vietnam may be taken within the next fortnight. That is due to the persistent developments occurring in South Vietnam, where a large part of the claims made by the Americans are dissipated. They are being destroyed by internal events there. We have been told by the Foreign Secretary that he bases his case largely on this aspect, as being a supporter of the elections which were to take place in South Vietnam some weeks ago. But a decision might have to be made within a fortnight as to whether there is any possibility of those elections taking place at all.

In The Times today its Washington correspondent indicates clearly how critical is this decision on the political aspect of the matter in Vietnam and how that might come to a head, as well as the military question, in the next fortnight. The report says: Somehow Air Marshal Ky must be persuaded to honour his commitment to hold elections. This is seen to be the next step in what the State Department described as a continuing process of unifying the country, although few people have any idea of how they can be held during a war and under a Government that does not want them. That is a report from Washington about the so-called next steps that have to be taken to implement the political policy in South Vietnam, to which Her Majesty's Government say they owe allegiance. The Foreign Secretary argues the whole of his case about Vietnam and the position there by saying that he supports these elections. We are told from Washington that many people are reaching the conclusion, which many here have reached, that it will be practically impossible to hold elections in this situation, under the present Government of South Vietnam—that is, elections which could be described as being anything like fair.

If that is the case, and that report certainly conflicts with the kind of indications which we have been given by the Foreign Secretary, what is the basis for the Government's political standing in Vietnam? We are confronted with two combined factors. One may have further commotions in the next week or two, in which the present Government of South Vietnam will say that they are to take even more totalitarian powers than already exercised and, at the same time, the American Government are making up their mind whether they think that the only way to escape from this situation is to intensify the war by the exercising of their overwhelming air power.

Everyone would agree that this is an extremely dangerous situation, and not one which we can tolerate when we have no influence upon it. All of our own foreign policies depend upon a successful outcome here. Every possibility of reaching agreements in Europe or in the world depends upon getting peace in Vietnam. It is only when this cloud is removed that we will be able to see the rest of the international horizon at all. I therefore urge the Government to say that they will play the very fullest part in these consultations. We would like them to make their demands in public, and I hope that they will do so in the not too distant future. If they find that this is not possible, at least let the Government make the maximum representations in private. The time will have to come, very soon, when they will have to make the declaration in public. Let the Government be under no misunderstanding about the situation. The strength of feeling on this side of the House is very powerful indeed.

I have never said that I questioned the motives of the Prime Minister, or the other members of the Government, in their desire to secure a peace in Vietnam.

Mr. Speaker

Order. The hon. Gentleman is straying just a little into the merits of the matter rather than giving reasons why we should not adjourn for Whitsun.

Mr. Foot

I apologise, Sir. I will bring my remarks to a conclusion almost immediately. You have pulled me up at an awkward time, Mr. Speaker, when I was trying to say a world in favour of the Government. I never get a chance to do this; maybe I do not try hard enough. Anyhow, I have to abbreviate that part of my prepared remarks.

I do not question the motives of members of the Government. What I have always questioned, and what I believe growing numbers of people are questioning, is the correctness of the Government's policy for securing the end which they say they desire—a peace in Vietnam. This country is under-playing its hand. We could exercise much more influence in these affairs if we exerted ourselves.

I urge the Government, during these next two weeks—although they may have many other matters to deal with, such as the seamen's strike, Rhodesia, and other things which are bound to crop up—to place at the top of their agenda the search for how they can best use all their power and influence to secure peace in Vietnam, upon which the peace of all of us may depend.

4.29 p.m.

Sir Harmar Nicholls (Peterborough)

I should like briefly to comment on the significance of the intervention of the hon. Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot). Those of us who have been here some time know that it is not unusual for him to use the Motion on whether we should adjourn for one or other of the Recesses as the basis from which to launch an attack or to express a point of view which he sincerely holds. But the significance this time is that he has done it against his own Government. whose Whip he accepts. This means that he is delaying his own Government's business.

It is part of the Parliamentary system for hon. Members to try to delay their opponent's Government because they usually feel that what the Government are doing is not right. But we start by believing that members of the Governrnent side think that what the Government are doing is right and they do not use our procedures to delay the Government in doing what they are supposed to think is the right thing for the nation.

The hon. Member for Ebbw Vale referred to three things. He referred, in passing, to the seamen's strike. He said that what the Government were doing was not right, that they were not doing very well. He disagreed with the way in which they have intervened in the strike. He does not feel that they have been strong enough with the ship owners. In the very brief reference which he made to the matter, he was satisfied that what his Government, whose Whip he accepts, were doing was not in the best interests of the country. He said that, if he has the chance to do so, he will enlarge on that theme next Thursday.

The hon. Member went on to the question of Rhodesia and South Africa generally and said that what the Government were doing was not right, that it was dangerous and wrong. Then he went on to his main reason for intervening in the debate. He pointed out how very wrong the Government's foreign policy was, how he disagreed with what the Prime Minister said, how he disagreed with what the Foreign Secretary was doing, and how he was satisfied that the alliance with America was not being used in the best interests of this country and the world. I cannot think of a more fundamental difference between a supporter of the Government, or a supposed supporter, and the Government, and I believe that cognisance should be taken of it.

The hon. Gentleman said that "powerful influences"—those were his words—felt the same as he did. That is significant, for this reason. We have just had a General Election. [HON. MEMBERS: "What was the hon. Gentleman's majority?"] There was only just a majority of three; it is 200 per cent. more than is absolutely necessary. We have just come through a General Election. We need not have had that election. The Government were not defeated in the House. There was no fundamental issue on which they had to go to the country for its support. The reason that we had the General Election, as explained by the Prime Minister, who used his power to call it, was that in the interests of the nation a Government with a majority of three were not capable of doing their duty or truly to represent the nation.

The right hon. Gentleman said, "If we go to the nation, and get our mandate strengthened by a bigger majority, we can act in the interests of this country with much more confidence and effect". So the right hon. Gentleman went to the country.

The Prime Minister has a majority of 97, or he is supposed to have a majority of 97. Have the Government a majority of 97?

Mr. Deputy Speaker (Sir Eric Fletcher)

Order. I must ask the hon. Gentleman to address his remarks to the Motion on whether we should or should not adjourn for the Whitsun Recess.

Sir Harmar Nicholls

That is whole purpose of my intervention, Mr. Deputy Speaker.

It is in the best interests of the House, the nation and the Government that we should adjourn. The hon. Member for Ebbw Vale and his colleagues should find out where they stand. I am arguing in their interests. They should not oppose or delay the permission which we are giving ourselves to go on holiday. They need a holiday. I am arguing that it is wrong to delay it.

I make this point in support of that contention. Have we a majority of 97? [HON. MEMBERS: "We?"] I talk as a Britisher. Have we, the British nation, a Government in power with a majority of 97? On paper, they are supposed to have such a majority. The hon. Member for Ebbw Vale has disagreed with the Government on nearly all the fundamental issues. He has great power. I am certain that the Left-wing section of his party, which numbers 40 or 50, of which he is the accredited leader—[Interruption.] I should like to be certain that the Government feel that they have a majority of 97 and that this powerful influence, so critical, so different and fundamental——

Mr. James Tinn (Cleveland)

On a point of order. We have listened to the hon. Member for Peterborough (Sir Harmar Nicholls) summarising the speech of the hon. Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot) and the Government's motives in going to the country when they did and in assessing their support in the House. The relevance of this to the Motion seems to be very remote indeed.

Mr. Deputy Speaker

I have already warned the hon. Member for Peterborough (Sir Harmar Nicholls) that he must relate his remarks to the Motion. Whether the Government have a majority of 97 or not is not relevant to the Motion.

Sir Harmar Nicholls

I am arguing that the proper use of the Whitsun Recess can decide whether the Government have an effective majority of 97. If, after the Whitsun Recess, this powerful section of the Government come back as muddled and critical of the Government as it is now, we shall not be able to tell the world that we have a stable Government with a majority of 97. The Whitsun Recess——

Mr. Hugh Jenkins (Putney) rose——

Sir Harmar Nicholls

I am answering Mr. Deputy Speaker. I am justifying the continuation of my remarks.

Mr. Deputy Speaker

I have pointed out that the hon. Gentleman must confine his remarks to comments relevant to the Motion.

Sir Harmar Nicholls

I am certain that it is in the best interests of the House and of the critical Left-Wing section which opposes the Government that we should have a Whitsun Recess of at least 14 days. In the interests of the nation, we should give these hon. Members a chance to go to the seaside and to let some fresh air blow through their brains so that they can decide whether or not they support the Government. If they get in step with their own Government, it may well be that the Government can give the impression to the world that they are as stable as they have tried to claim. I oppose what the hon. Member for Ebbw Vale said. I believe that we should decide without any more ado to accept the Motion, so that we can all clear our minds about our duty.

4.38 p.m.

Mr. R. T. Paget (Northampton)

The hon. Member for Peterborough (Sir Harmar Nicholls) asked why this side of the House opposes the Adjournment. The electorate decided that hon. Members opposite were not fit to govern. From what we have seen of them, we have come to the conclusion that they are not fit to oppose. Therefore, this burden falls on us.

I agree with my hon. Friend the Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot) that this is not the time when we should adjourn, but not primarily because of the situation in Vietnam. I do not agree with my hon. Friend on that matter, because I do not believe that we have any influence over what happens in Vietnam. We had great influence in Korea, because we had a brigade there. It is a hard fact of life that we have influence where we have power and are exerting it. There are many pressures on President Johnson from people who have power in his party and within Congress, but in this matter we are impotent.

It may be, as my hon. Friend says, that there is an undertaking to consult us. Husbands quite often have consultative rights, but they know that they are on the basis, "You had better agree, because it will not make any difference anyway". Any consultative rights which we have concerning Vietnam are upon that basis, and it is no good "kidding" ourselves otherwise.

But the two issues on which I am unhappy are, first, the seamen's strike, and, secondly, the situation in Southern Africa. On neither of these issues has the Government's performance so far given me any great confidence in their ability to handle it. What concerns me is that these two continuing situations should go on, without Parliament being here to intervene and put its point of view.

I am not so far seeking to go into what the ultimate decision should be on the seamen's strike. I am concerned about the immediate handling of a continuing situation which is ruinous to the export prospects of the country. We probably all realise that the seamen are suffering, and have long suffered, from a grave injustice. Whether one compares them with the seamen of other European countries, or with comparable people in this country, whether in transport as a whole or in the Royal Navy, they are very much worse off. They are suffering from an injustice, and as an intermediary step, even if temporary, that should be corrected.

The theory that working men should accept injustice in the national interest is very old. It was the basis of Karl Marx's theory of progressive misery. In point of fact, it has been the militancy of trade unions, which for generation after generation have refused to accept that proposition, which has saved us over and again from the folly of economists and Chancellors. Over and over again, the thing which has prevented the economy from going into a deflationary slump has been the militancy of the trade union move- ment, and I am inclined to think that we are sitting on this side of the House now because the militancy of our trade union movement prevented deflationary policies from succeeding last winter.

Now I see a situation in which a strike is being handled in a manner lamentably reminiscent of Baldwin in 1926. I see the shipowners' leader, Mr. Geddes, time and again basking in the approval of the establishment, as he demands unconditional surrender from men who have a just cause. I do not find that a happy situation in which to go on holiday and leave the Government. The Economist urges us that this has to be fought, to make an example and impose an incomes policy.

What do we mean by an incomes policy? I believe in an incomes policy where one has a planned economy and a just incomes distribution, but here is an incomes policy which is designed to maintain an unjust status quo.

Mr. Deputy Speaker

Order. I do not want to interrupt the hon. and learned Gentleman, but he must relate his remarks to the question whether or not we should adjourn.

Mr. Paget

With respect, Mr. Deputy Speaker, and in spite of the mumblings of the hon. Member for Peterborough (Sir Harmar Nicholls), I am doing exactly that. I am looking not at the ultimate issues here, but at the immediate issues. The situation that is evolving from day to day, and as we are leaving it, is a situation in which, pending settlement, the seamen are being asked to accept injustice. I shall not touch on the question of a long-term settlement, but I am examining the reasons why the immediate day-to-day situation doing great injury to the country is to be allowed to run on in absence of Parliament. I am devoting myself entirely to that.

If I am told that to deal with this matter on a temporary basis upsets the incomes policy, my answer is that it is not my incomes policy and that it is not an incomes policy which I support. I did not come here to support a Conservative Government pledged to maintain an incomes policy which was simply the status quo. As a party of Socialism, we are here to correct an unjust distribution of income, not to maintain it. To say that we cannot interfere with this strike, because that might upset the existing and unjust incomes balance is not something which I can accept.

I did not come here to substitute for an upper middle-class Conservative Government a lower middle-class Conservative Government. That is not what I was looking for. If we are to have a socially just incomes policy, it must be a policy designed to change the balance of incomes, and it can only be achieved if we forget about our first priority being to maintain the £ and we bring our currency under public control.

I was deeply disturbed yesterday when the Prime Minister resisted the idea of a temporary subsidy. Why? If the position is that this is a matter of national concern, vital to the whole community, and the seamen are getting an unfair wage and the employers——

Sir Harmar Nicholls

On a point of order. I am not against free speech and extending the rules, but I feel that I was called to order when I was no further astray on the narrow terms of this Motion than the hon. and learned Gentleman is now.

Mr. Deputy Speaker

I am listening very carefully to what the hon. and learned Gentleman is saying. Provided that he relates what he says to the Motion before the House it is in order, but I must warn him that he is getting wide of the subject.

Mr. Paget

With great respect, Mr. Deputy Speaker, I am saying that this situation with which we are dealing, a temporary situation, should be dealt with by a temporary subsidy.

I am disturbed about that being rejected as one of the things which should be considered in the negotiations that we shall leave when we go away on holiday. That is all that I am saying. If the seamen are getting an unfair wage and the employers, as they say, are getting an unfair profit—and this is a matter of the national interest, about which we are all concerned—why should we not pay for this benefit for which we are asking? That is what providing a subsidy means, certainly on a temporary basis, until the rights and wrongs of this are worked out.

After all, there is practically not a merchant navy in the world, except ours, that does not receive a subsidy in one form or another.

Mr. Deputy Speaker

I hesitate to interrupt the hon. and learned Gentleman. He is entitled to give reasons why we should come back immediately after Whitsun. He is not entitled to debate the merits of the strike on this Motion.

Mr. Paget

With respect, I am simply asking why the question of a subsidy is being rejected as one of the possible means of settlement during these continuous negotiations. Within the transport industry, we pay very large subsidies to the railways and the canals. All our competitors abroad pay subsidies to their merchant navies. Why should a subsidy be excluded as a temporary method of getting our commerce flowing again?

Mr. Tinn

On a point of order. Surely this is disrespect for your Ruling, Mr. Deputy Speaker. It is an argument of the merits of a particular solution of the seamen's dispute. It has nothing to do with the Motion.

Mr. Deputy Speaker

I will stop the hon. and learned Member when I feel that he has transgressed the limits of order.

Mr. Paget

I regret if this is an argument which is embarrassing to the Government's representative on the second bench. None the less, it is a valid argument and one which should be put.

The other subject on which I am deeply concerned, and on which I have been ploughing a lonely furrow, is the subject of Rhodesia. Here again, we have a continuing situation and one that worries me. If this situation turns to violence—and there is some indication that it will do so—it will become very unmanageable.

Bitterness has built up from the spectacle which appears to be that we are supporting a régime in Zambia which is infiltrating across the border armed bands of assassins and that from a radio, where we have put in boosters to cover Rhodesia the better, there is day after day going out incitement to murder, lectures on how to stab when only kitchen knives are available, on how to make petrol bombs, how to hamstring cattle and how to burn crops. That this should be going out day after day by means of instruments which are also used by the B.B.C., produced with technical assistance from us, and that we should be there supporting it surely builds up amongst the people on lonely farms who have to fear sudden massacre the kind of bitterness which is unmanageable.

I very much urge that my hon. Friend the Minister of State, Commonwealth Relations Office who is out there should be sent special instructions—perhaps my right hon. Friend the Leader of the House will tell us whether this can be done—that it must be made clear that these gangs are elements of Z.A.N.U. which was defeated in the battle of the townships by Z.A.P.U. and was driven out of the country by this other Nationalist party and then taken over by the Chinese in Tanzania.

Mr. Deputy Speaker

Order. I have no doubt that all this is important, but it is really not relevant to the Motion which is before the House.

Mr. Paget

With great respect, Mr. Deputy Speaker, this is a continuing situation. While we go on holiday, these organised and trained assassins are going out from a base with the vocal support of the President of a country whom we continue to support, finance and supply. I am not happy about going into recess while that is happening.

Here are two continuing situations which, whatever view one may take about them, have not been very happily handled by the Government. They are situations which Parliament should not go on holiday and leave alone.

4.54 p.m.

Mr. David Steel (Roxburgh, Selkirk and Peebles)

I should like to raise one matter with the Leader of the House before we decide whether to depart for a fortnight. It is a comparatively minor matter compared with the subjects which have been discussed already, but it is none the less important.

At the time of dissolution of the last Parliament, several Bills were in process at various stages in the House. All but one of them have either been resumed in the present Parliament or are about to be resumed by the Government. The intervention of dissolution may have caused inconvenience in some cases, but it was not serious. For example, in the former Industrial Development Bill, investment grants were to be effective from 17th January. That is still the case in the new Bill which is before the present Parliament. There was, however, one Bill which was in process in the last Parliament which shows no sign of reappearing in this Parliament, and that was the Private Member's Bill introduced by Mr. Humphrey Berkeley, the former Member for Lancaster, the Sexual Offences Bill.

We have had the Ballot for Private Members' Bills. It would appear that none of the Private Members who have been successful in the Ballot and who are near the top of the list are likely to take up that Bill. Regardless of whether we as individual Members are in favour of or opposed to the Bill, the position is that the House of Commons has already decided by a vote in the previous Parliament to change the criminal law, that the House of Lords yesterday completed the Committee stage of the same Bill and has decided that there should be a change in the criminal law but that, none the less, the criminal law is remaining unchanged.

It has been said earlier that the Government cannot provide time for this Bill. If we are finding time to depart for a fortnight's holiday, surely it is up to the Government to provide time or, at least, to guarantee that if a private Member were successful in getting the Bill passed under the Ten-Minute Rule, time would be found for it. Whatever view we take of this matter, it cannot be at all satisfactory for us to allow to continue a situation in which both Houses of Parliament have gone on record as requiring the criminal law to be changed but that, because of the Government's failure to provide time, it will remain unchanged.

4.57 p.m.

Mr. William Baxter (West Stirlingshire)

Before we agree to go into recess, I should like to know when the Government will give time to discuss the important question of the appointment of an arms salesman. I have endeavoured, by approaching Mr. Speaker direct, to get an Adjournment debate on this question. I have also asked my right hon. Friend the Leader of the House if he will allow time to discuss this important matter. Up to the present, however, it is a matter which has not had full investigation and inquiry or, indeed, the support of the House.

It is an innovation from the general practice of a British Government to appoint an individual to do a particular job for private industry. In this case, we appointed an individual at £8,000 a year. Many questions still remain unanswered. Before we adjourn for the Recess, I should like to get answers to those questions.

What type of staff will this man be permitted to employ and what will be the maximum cost of such a staff? I am informed by letter from my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister that he will have an expense allowance, but what will be the amount of that expense allowance? We have known in the past that considerable sums can be involved in arms sales. There are many devious ways to achieve this object. Will this man have an unlimited amount of British capital with which to try to influence those to whom he seeks to sell arms, and will he be able to use that money as he feels inclined to do?

Will the armaments firms which receive orders as a result of this man's endeavours pay to the Government something on commission? Will this be a matter to which we will get an answer? What will the armaments firms subscribe towards the cost of this individual? I should like to know, even if no one else in the House wants to know, to which countries he will be selling the arms. Will it be Cuba, Russia, China, Formosa or South Africa, or what countries will be involved? Has he a free hand in this matter? Is there to be Government control by means of rules and regulations? Again, what type of arms will he sell? Will they be atomic weapons?

Mr. Deputy Speaker

Order. The hon. Gentleman can pursue this series of questions only if he relates it to the Motion before the House, which is whether we should adjourn.

Mr. Baxter

I appreciate that, Mr. Deputy Speaker. But, without posing the questions, naturally I cannot get any answers. The answers would enable me to decide whether or not to agree to the adjournment of the House for a fortnight. Last Thursday, I asked my right hon. Friend the Leader of the House to give us time to discuss this matter. By a letter to Mr. Speaker, I have asked for an Adjournment debate in order to discuss it. I have been denied those things.

This appointment is a gross departure from all preconceived ideas of Government appointments. It is important, and I want answers to my questions. I should like to know, and I think that I am entitled to ask, if this individual and his staff are going to sell atomic arms. If they are, I am sure that the House would want to debate the matter before they are permitted to do so. If they are not to sell atomic arms, what type are they to sell? Are they to sell bows and arrows, pea shooters, or something like that? My right hon. Friend the Prime Minister indicated to me in a letter that it was to be armaments of defence. What are they?

At Question Time today I tried to ask a supplementary question, but I was not called. I think that the House should not adjourn for a holiday until I have an answer to the question which I was going to pose. It was on the general agreement that seemed to prevail in the House between hon. Members opposite and the Prime Minister himself on the undesirability of living on borrowed capital. In view of the fact that only a few days ago the House agreed to borrow £430 million from America at 4 per cent., I wanted to know why the general agreement now not to borrow did not prevail a week ago. It astonishes me.

Getting back to the question of the arms salesman, I am not against the principle of the Government having salesmen——

Mr. Deputy Speaker

Order. The hon. Gentleman is entitled to give illustrations of the questions that he would like to put if the House does not adjourn, but he cannot pursue the merits of the appointment of an arms salesman.

Mr. Baxter

I appreciate that, Mr. Deputy Speaker. But, presuming that the merits are good that the nation should appoint super-salesmen, I wonder if in the course of his reply the Leader of the House will consider the possibility of appointing a salesman for peaceful pursuits such as the sale of tractors and fertilisers, which we were discussing last night.

Fertilisers are important, because we know the benefits that they bring to agriculture. Our balance of payments is much better because our farmers are able to produce more food. The reason for that is the excellence of our fertilisers. We discussed the subject last night with a view to helping our own farmers by means of the Fertilisers Scheme. I suggest to my right hon. Friend that we might appoint an international fertiliser salesman. That would bring about a greater amount of good by helping others to grow food in the parched lands of Africa and other areas of the world to feed the hungry.

I think that the innovation of an inter-rational salesman is a good one——

Mr. Deputy Speaker

Order. On this Motion. we really cannot debate the merits of appointing an international fertiliser salesman.

Mr. Baxter

I can appreciate that, Mr. Deputy Speaker. However, the idea cresents great possibilities, if I may say so.

To get back to the subject in which I am most interested, which is whether or not we rise for a fortnight's holiday without making decisions on the very important questions that some of my hon. Friends have raised, I contend that the question that I have posed about the appointment of this merchant of war, to which I have not received a satisfactory answer from the Government, is a matter which should be justified before the House rises. Up to the moment, there has been no evidence from the Government that a salesman of arms is necessary, desirable or morally correct. I would certainly deny the right of Parliament to rise without getting a satisfactory answer, or, at least, a debate on the matter.

Mr. Peter Bessell (Bodmin)

When the Leader of the House announced that we were going to adjourn for 15 days for the Whitsun Recess, I said that it was not in keeping with dynamic, modern, progressive government, and a number of hon. Gentlemen on the Government Benches called out the word "hypocrite". I am glad to see that the hon. Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot)——

Mr. Kenneth Lewis (Rutland and Stamford)

How can the hon. Gentleman say that, because only a third of the Liberal Members are present in the Chamber? If they do not want to adjourn for Whitsun, why are not the rest of the Liberal Members in their places?

Mr. Bessell

I have heard of people leading with their chins, but the hon. Gentleman has done more than that. As I look round the Chamber, I see six Conservative Members present out of a total of 252. That is a powerful indictment of his own remarks, and I would say that it appears to me that the Conservative Party has already adjourned.

If I may return to the point of the Motion, I see that the hon. Member for Ebbw Vale, the hon. and learned Member for Northampton (Mr. Paget) and other hon. Members on the Government side now share the view which I expressed when the Leader of the House announced the length of the Recess, namely, that in view of the many urgent matters confronting the country and confronting this House, it is quite irresponsible of the Government to suggest that we should take a 15-day holiday at this moment of time.

We have heard the hon. Member for Ebbw Vale referring to the situation in Vietnam, and I am bound to say that, in my view, whatever the merits or otherwise of his argument, no one can dispute that while that highly dangerous situation exists in South-East Asia, it seems incredible that the House of Commons should adjourn for a holiday of this length. [HON. MEMBERS: "It is not a holiday."] Hon. Members opposite say that it is not a holiday. I accept that many of us will be carrying out other duties in our constituencies, and I may say that, for my part, I am taking no holiday, either, because I shall be doing just that.

I am under the impression that I was elected to the House in order to serve here and deal with any issue of urgency that might arise. The points which have been made by the hon. Member for Ebbw Vale, the hon. and learned Member for Northampton and the hon. Member for West Stirlingshire (Mr. W. Baxter) are valid. But there is one other issue which I would add to those which have been raised, and it is the one which I mentioned when the issue first arose a week or so ago following the announcement by the Leader of the House about length of the Adjournment—namely, the Finance Bill and the Ministry of Labour Bill.

The Finance Bill has been delayed this year as a result of the General Election. I appreciate that there was no alternative. The fact remains that, having had a General Election, having had a Budget statement from the Chancellor and having now had a sight of the Finance Bill, it is a matter of real urgency that the House in Committee should get on with the business of debating the Bill and passing the necessary legislation to put it into effect.

More important still is the fact that we have yet to see the Ministry of Labour Bill, and I believe that it is irresponsible for the Government to suggest a 15-day Adjournment when the issue of the payroll tax, or the Selective Employment Tax, which will be the main part of the Ministry of Labour Bill, is causing so much anxiety and so much real worry to people throughout the country.

I would be ruled out of order if I were to attempt to debate the merits or otherwise of the payroll tax, but it is the fact that many people, including, for example, hoteliers in my constituency and throughout the holiday areas of this country, are in a serious dilemma with regard to part-time workers. They do not know, for example, whether there is any likelihood of the Government accepting amendments to their proposals which would enable part-time workers to be employed without having to pay the 25s. 0d. or 12s. 6d. a week payroll tax. This is not only causing hoteliers real concern and anxiety, but is preventing them from employing labour, and consequently lifting the unemployment figures artificially.

In addition, we have the problems of quarries, mining, and other industries, upon which no clear directive has yet been given by the Government. In these circumstances, these industries are in a state of mind where they do not know whether to promote investment, whether they will have to curtail the number of staff employed, and so on. These and various other issues are giving rise to concern not only among managements, but among labour.

Whatever the merits of the tax may be, whatever arguments we may have to engage in either in the House itself or in Committee, the fact remains that it is wholly wrong, and, as I have said, wholly irresponsible, for the Government to propose a Recess at this time, when we have had the interruption of a General Election which has delayed the Finance Bill, when we have had an Easter Recess only a matter of a few weeks ago, and when we have so much urgent and vital business confronting the House, and consequently confronting the nation as a whole.

The uncertainties which have arisen as a result of the Chancellor's Budget statement must be cleared up as quickly as possible, and the same thing applies to the valid points which have been raised by hon. Gentlemen opposite. There are serious issues confronting not only the nation, but the whole world, and to suggest that we should go away to our constituencies, albeit to carry out important duties there, at a time when Parliament should be in session dealing with these matters, is, to my mind, something which the people of this country are not likely to forgive or to forget, and I therefore urge the Leader of the House to reconsider this matter and to think again before saying to the House, "You have two of three weeks' work. Now go off boys and enjoy yourselves".

5.14 p.m.

Mr. Hugh Jenkins (Putney)

I hope that when my right hon. Friend the Leader of the House replies to this short debate he will give us certain assurances about the circumstances in which the Government will think it right to recall the House, and it seems, therefore, to be not inappropriate to make one or two points on that subject.

It is true that hon. Members on both sides of the House have a considerable backlog of undone work arising from as far back as the General Election, and that they will make good use of the time provided by this Recess, but this does not affect the other side of the picture, namely, that we shall not be here to keep an eye on what the Government are doing, and therefore it is incumbent on us to give a few brief instructions on how they should conduct themselves in our absence.

My hon. Friends have made one or two points about that. My hon. and learned Friend the Member for Northampton (Mr. Paget) suggested that we have no right, during the Recess, to have any influence on what was going to happen in Vietnam, or to make any serious attempt to bring peace to that ravished country, because we do not Lave a brigade there. I remind my hon. and learned Friend that the United States had no brigade present in Suez in 1956, yet they made a substantial contribution to bringing that equally unfortunate debacle to an end.

Mr. Paget

The United States had her Sixth Fleet in and out of the landings. That was a power situation.

Mr. Jenkins

Indeed, and there is also a power situation so far as this country is concerned. We are not denuded of forces in various parts of the world, and my hon. and learned Friend cannot use Chat parallel effectively.

In furthering his argument, my hon. and learned Friend the Member for Northampton said that the House should not adjourn because of the situation in Rhodesia, but he seemed to be arguing the reverse in this case. So far as I understand him, the logic of his argument is that because we have no forces in Vietnam we are not entitled to intervene effectively there, but because we have no forces in Rhodesia we are entitled to intervene there. I suggest to my hon. and learned Friend that the logic of his argument is simply that we ought to have a brigade in Rhodesia. According to my hon. and learned Friend's argument, this would enable us effectively to intervene in that country.

Mr. Paget

I suggested that we ought to intervene to prevent organised murder gangs going from Zambia into Rhodesia. We have troops in Zambia. We have communications in Zambia. We have power there to intervene, but, much as we would like to intervene in Vietnam, we have no means of making our voice heard.

Mr. Jenkins

My hon. and learned Friend understands his own logic in these matters. Whether the House agrees with him is a different question; certainly I do not.

In spite of what has been said from both sides of the House, we are in all probability going away for about 14 days. This at any rate seems to be very likely, and I hope that when my right hon. Friend the Leader of the House replies he will give us certain assurances as to the circumstances in which it will be thought right to recall the House. I believe that my right hon. Friend will say that, with regard to the seamen's strike, in certain eventualities he will recall the House. I hope that he will give us an assurance on that.

I believe that my right hon. Friend will say that if the situation in Vietnam were to develop in the unhappy way which my hon. Friend the Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot) has suggested it might, he would think it right to recall the House.

My right hon. Friend can take it that as far as I am concerned, if the Government feel it right during the Recess to send a brigade to Rhodesia to preserve peace in that country, they will have my full support and that if they choose to recall the House on that issue, well and good, because it is an action which I think the Government will be entitled to take, and one which the people of this country are beginning to think they should take to ensure the preservation of human life, whatever the colour of a man's skin.

For all those reasons, I hope that when my right hon. Friend replies to this debate he will give us the assurances which I have suggested, along the lines which I have indicated to him.

5.19 p.m.

Dr. David Kerr (Wandsworth, Central)

To prolong this debate might delay the Whitsun Recess itself. I have listened with interest to my hon. Friends dwelling on certain specific points which they feel might occasion the early return of the House. However, it is rather to the domestic scene that I want to draw my right hon. Friend's attention, namely, the difficulty which the House has in conducting its own business.

I am surprised that we are being invited—one might almost say seduced—to take a fortnight's rest at this stage in our Parliamentary history, and to leave aside the many pressing problems which we know exist at the moment, and to leave aside, too, the many pressing problems which might burst on us within the next fortnight. Heaven knows that crises can arise in less than 14 days.

There is the pressure on Government time to which we in our turn have had our attention drawn time and time again. I am at a loss to understand why a fortnight's holiday is thought appropriate at this stage in our Parliament when we have not merely a programme of legislation to bring to the House, but a number of cobwebs to clear away upstairs in Committee.

It seems to me that a fortnight's invitation to holiday when there is so much housekeeping to be done is the very negation of good planning. I hope that my right hon. Friend will be able to advise the House that consideration will be given to the length of time that we devote to our Recesses. The time during which Parliament sits amounts to no more than 166 days out of 365. As a physician I am all in favour of that blessing which cardiologists call diastole—that moment when the heart ceases to pump and relaxes, ready for the next vital effort—but any heart which spends two-thirds of its time in diastole is failing.

There are growing arguments for the intervention of Government in the affairs of the nation, and for extending the time during which Parliament sits. With five years stretching ahead of us this is the first period of relaxation to which we are invited, and as an individual I hope to make good use of it. But I venture to suggest that from an institutional point of view those spacious and supine days are passing, and that Parliament can no longer afford the luxury of 200 days' Recess during the year.

Many people acquiesced reluctantly to the increase in our salaries, expecting us to earn those salaries by working for them. A few people outside thought we already worked for them. With the increase in salaries, the increase in pressure and the increasing demand of legislation there is no excuse for lengthy Recesses of this dimension. If we had a fortnight every three months, and perhaps even a little longer during the summer, it would be a splendid thing for many of us to go to our constituencies and relax and see something of our families, rather than have the very long Recess which will shortly follow this fortnight's break. It is a matter of unfortunate timing.

If the programme of legislation which we have been told about is all ready to come before us, why is it thought appropriate to have a fortnight's rest so early in the history of this Parliament? If this legislation is not ready to come before us, I should like to know why. There has been plenty of time for the Parliamentary draftsmen to get on with the job. I hope that my right hon. Friend will have a close and critical look at the question of the length of Recesses. We have cut them down during the last 50 years but they still need a great deal of pruning and paring.

5.28 p.m.

The Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons (Mr. Herbert Bowden)

The Motion before the House is That this House, at its rising on Friday, do adjourn till Monday 13th June. That is precisely 10 Parliamentary days. In view of the fact that the Finance Bill will be late and the House may not be able to rise on 31st July—which would be the normal time for the Summer Recess—the Government thought it right that we should take the opportunity of a little longer Recess at Whitsun than is normal. I say "a little longer", because if we look back over the years we find that there have been practically an equal number of occasions on which there have been one-week Recesses and two-week Recesses respectively.

My hon. Friends have put forward a number of reasons why the House ought not to go away at this stage for a Recess of 10 Parliamentary days. They have mentioned certain happenings in this country and in the world generally. On the seamen's strike, I announced at Business today that on Thursday we shall debate the Message from the Queen and all the Regulations. This will be a full day's debate and will enable the House to ask detailed questions of my right hon. Friends, and a full discussion will take place on the strike situation.

Together with everyone else in this country, I am sure, I hope that long before we return from the Recess the strike will have been resolved. I can assure hon. Members that my right hon. Friend the Minister of Labour will take every initiative in that direction. Should it be necessary during the next fortnight, because of the strike or any other matter, the House can be recalled under Standing Order No. 117, on representation to Mr. Speaker, and the Government will not hesitate to take that action.

My hon. Friend the Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot) suggested that we should not rise because of the situation in Rhodesia. The House should be reminded that at the present moment, within the context of the terms and principles that have been clearly laid down by the Government, certain exploratory talks have started. I am sure that the House will agree that it would be undesirable to stay here and have a debate on Rhodesia during the time when those exploratory talks are taking place.

On 27th April my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister made it clear that every effort is being made to ensure that nothing should be done at all, through publicity or otherwise, to endanger the success of these talks. They are difficult and critical. I am sure that the House will agree that we ought not to discuss Rhodesia while these very tricky negotiations are taking place.

On the wider question of Vietnam, not only the House but the whole country is extremely worried. We are horrified to read in our newspapers every morning of shootings and atrocities, and the loss of human life. This has been going on for a long time now. I should like to think that our staying here for the next fortnight and talking about it would help, but I am not sure that it would. The Government have an excellent record in this respect. They have taken every possible line to bring the conflicting parties together round the table. As my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister has pointed out on more than one occasion, the Americans are quite prepared to withdraw their troops when it can be clearly established that real talks will take place which will enable peace to return to Vietnam on the basis of a Government that the South Vietnamese themselves want.

At Question Time yesterday my right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary answered a number of detailed points on Vietnam, but the House should be reminded—and this does not apply to any- one in the House—that some people in this country and in the world are much more concerned with victory for North Vietnam than with peace for the whole of Vietnam. I am sure that everyone in this country is very worried about what is happening there.

The hon. Member for Peterborough (Sir Harmar Nicholls) was entitled to express his fears that the House ought not. to rise for Whitsun, but I hardly agree with his reason. He suggested that it was not clear that the Government have a majority of 97. I can assure him that that is absolutely clear, although, on the other hand, it took about seven recounts to establish that he had a majority of three. From that point of view he ought not to have raised that question.

My hon. and learned Friend the Member for Northampton (Mr. Paget), in addition to speaking on South Africa, expressed the view that we should not rise until we had discussed the incomes policy. I can assure him that the success or failure of the incomes policy is not likely to hinge upon the question whether or not the House is here to debate it within the next 10 days. He also mentioned the Regulations, and some aspects of the Emergency Powers Act and the proclamation issued yesterday. These matters can be discussed on Thursday.

The right hon. Member for Roxburgh, Selkirk and Peebles (Mr. David Steel) mentioned the fact that on the dissolution of the last Parliament the Sexual Offences Bill fell. So did all the other legislation that had not been completed at the time. Whatever may have happened in another place yesterday with regard to the Bill to which he referred, if it should so happen that it is picked up here it will have to take its chance with other Bills. I cannot promise to give it priority over every other Private Member's Bill. It must take its chance.

My hon. Friend the Member for West Stirlingshire (Mr. W. Baxter) was concerned about the appointment of an arms salesman and had a number of detailed questions to ask, none of which I can answer at the moment, but which he might put to my right hon. Friends at Question time or take the opportunity of an Adjournment debate—I understand that he has tried and failed—or further opportunities on Friday of this week and the usual half-hour Adjournments. He suggested also that we might appoint a salesman for peaceful things like fertilisers and tractors. We did this, but our problem at the moment is delivering these products once we have the orders. However, I hope that that too will be resolved.

The hon. Member for Bodmin (Mr. Bessell) kept referring to a 15 days' holiday. I must remind him that it is 10 Parliamentary days. It is a habit of the Liberal Party, with respect to the hon. Gentleman, to continue to do things of this sort in an exaggerated language. They are in the habit of promising the moon, knowing perfectly well that they will never have to produce it——

Mr. Bessell

I tried to make a constructive point. The dates given are from 27th May to 13th June, which I make to be 15 days. It is unfair of the right hon. Gentleman to be unnecessarily abusive.

Mr. Bowden

The hon. Gentleman is unnecessarily touchy. If he is of the opinion that this is 15 days, then he must be here alone on Saturdays and Sundays: I can assure him that the rest of us are not. Probably this is part of Liberal policy.

He raised the question of the Finance Bill and the Ministry of Labour Bill. I have answered this point on two successive Thursdays on Business questions. If he wishes to do as he threatened and divide the House on this question of a Recess, he is entitled to do so, but he will find himself in the position in which I

have been on more than one occasion, of having gone into the Lobby against a Motion for a Recess, hoping and praying that I would be defeated in the Lobby.

My hon. Friend the Member for Wandsworth, Central (Dr. David Kerr) asked why we should have a Recess at all——

Mr. Bessell

On a point of order. Is it in order for the Leader of the House to suggest that I would divide the House and then hope not to win my Division?

Mr. Deputy Speaker

I do not think that any point of order arises.

Mr. Bowden

My hon. Friend the Member for Wandsworth, Central said that he was surprised at the length of the Recess and quoted certain figures showing that the House sits for perhaps one-third of the year and does not sit for two-thirds of the year. He ignored the fact that we sit on many nights in addition to the days and that his mathematical calculation cannot be applied to everything or everyone because hardly anyone works on a Saturday or a Sunday.

Discussion of an important Bill will follow this—the Ministry of Social Security Bill—and I hope, on my firm assurances that the Government will not hesitate to recommend Mr. Speaker, under Standing Order No. 117, to recall the House in case of need during the next 10 Parliamentary days, that we can now come to a decision on the Motion.

Question put:—

The House divided: Ayes 202, Noes 8.

Division No. 15.] AYES [5.35 p.m.
Allaun, Frank (Salford, E.) Buchanan, Richard (G'gow, Sp'burn) Ennals, David
Anderson, Donald Butter, Herbert (Hackney, C.) Ensor, David
Archer, Peter Butler, Mrs. Joyce (Wood Green) Evans, loan L. (Birm'h'm, Yardley)
Armstrong Ernest Conlan, Bernard Faulds, Andrew
Atkins, Ronald (Preston, N.) Corbet, Mrs. Freda Fernyhough, E.
Atkinson, Norman (Tottenham) Crawshaw, Richard Fitt, Gerald (Belfast, W.)
Bacon, Rt. Hn. Alice Grossman, Rt. Hn. Richard Fletcher, Ted (Darlington)
Bagier, Gordon A. T. Cullen, Mrs. Alice Foley, Maurice
Barnett, Joel Davies, Dr. Ernest (Stretford) Foot, Michael (Ebbw Vale)
Baxter, Wiliam Davies, Harold (Leek) Ford, Ben
Bence, Cyril Davies, Ifor (Gower) Fowler, Gerry
Bennett, James (G'gow, Bridgeton) Davies, Robert (Cambridge) Fraser, Rt. Hn. Tom (Hamilton)
Bidwell, Sydney Delargy, Hugh Galpern, Sir Myer
Bishop, E. S. Dempsey, James Gardner, A. J.
Blackburn, F. Dewar, Donald Garrow, Alex
Blenkinsop, Arthur Diamond, Rt. Hn. John Gregory, Arnold
Boardman, H. Dickens, James Griffiths, Rt. Hn. James (Lianelly)
Booth, Albert Doig, Peter Hale, Leslie (Oldham, W.)
Bowden, Rt. Hn. Herbert Dunn, James A. Hamilton, James (Bothwell)
Braddock, Mrs. E. M. Dunnett, Jack Hamilton, William (Fife, W.)
Brooks, Edwin Dunwoody, Mrs. Cwyneth (Exeter) Hannan, William
Broughton, Dr. A. D. D. Dunwoody, Dr. John (F'th & C'b'e) Haseldine, Norman
Brown, Hugh D. (G'gow, Provan) Edwards, Robert (Bilston) Hatterstey, Roy
Brown,Bob(N'c'tle-upon-Tyne,W.) Ellis, John Hazell, Bert
Brown, R. W. (Shoreditch & F'bury) English, Michael Heffer, Eric S.
Herbison, Rt. Hn. Margaret Mapp, Charles Robertson, John (Paisley)
Hilton, W. S. Marquand, David Robinson, W. O. J. (Walth'stow,E.)
Hooley, Frank Mellish, Robert Rodgers, William (Stockton)
Houghton, Rt. Hn. Douglas Mendelson, J. J. Roebuck, Roy
Howarth, Harry (Wellingborough) Mikardo, Ian Rose, Paul
Howie, W. Miller, Dr. M. S. Rowlands, E. (Cardiff, N.)
Hughes, Emrys (Ayrshire, S.) Mitchell, R. C. (S'th'pton, Test) Ryan, John
Hynd, John Moonman, Eric Shaw, Arnold (Ilford, S.)
Janner, Sr Barnett Morgan, Elystan (Cardinganshire) Sheldon, Robert
Jeger, George (Goole) Moyle, Roland Shore, Peter (Stepney)
Jenkins, Hugh (Putney) Mulley, Rt. Hn. Frederick Short,Rt.Hn.Edward (N'c'tle-u-Tyne)
Johnson, Carol (Lewisham, S.) Neal, Harold Short, Mrs. Renee (W'hampton,N.E.)
Jones, Dan (Burnley) Newens, Stan Silkin, John (Deptford)
Jones, J. Idwal (Wrexham) Noel-Baker, Francis (Swindon) Silkin, S. C. (Dulwich)
Kenyon, Clifford Noel-Baker,RtHn.Philtp(Derby,S.) Slater, Joseph
Kerr, Dr. David (W'worth, Central) Norwood, Christopher Small, Wiliam
Kerr, Russell (Feltham) Oakes, Gordon Spriggs, Leslie
Lawson, George O'Malley, Brian Summerskill, Hn. Dr. Shirley
Leadbitter, Ted Oram, Albert E. Swingler, Stephen
Lee, John (Reading) Orbach, Maurice Symonds, J. B.
Lestor, Miss Jean Oswald, Thomas Thornton, Ernest
Lever, L. M. (Ardwick) Owen, Dr. David (Plymouth, S'tn) Tinn, James
Lewis, Ron (Carlisle) Owen, Will (Morpeth) Tuck, Raphael
Lipton, Marcus Page, Derek (King's Lynn) Urwin, T. W.
Lomas, Kenneth Palmer, Arthur Wainwright, Edwin (Dearne Valley)
Loughlin, Charles Pannell, Rt. Hn. Charles Walker, Harold (Doncaster)
Lyon, Alexander W. (York) Park, Trevor Wallace, George
Lyons Edward (Bradford, E.) Parker, John (Dagenham) Watkins, David (Consett)
McBride, Neil Pavitt, Laurence Watkins, Tudor (Brecon & Radnor)
McCann, John Pearson, Arthur (Pontypridd) Weitzman, David
McacColl, James Pearl, Rt. Hn. Fred Wellbeloved, James
Macdonald, A. H. Pentland, Norman Wells, William (Walsall, N.)
McGuire, Michael Perry, Ernest C. (Battersea, S.) Whitlock, William
McKay, Mrs. Margaret Perry, George H. (Nottingham, S.) Williams, Alan (Swansea, W.)
Mackenzie, Gregor (Rutherglen) Price, J. T. (Westhoughton) Williams, Alan Lee (Hornchurch)
Mackintosh, John P. Price, William (Rugby) Willis, George (Edinburgh, E.)
Maclennan, Robert Probert, Arthur Wilson, William (Coventry, S.)
McMillan, Tom (Glasgow, C.) Rankin, John Winnick, David
McNamara, J. Kevin Redhead, Edward Woodburn, Rt. Hn. A.
MacPherson, Malcolm Rhodes, Geoffrey Yates, Victor
Mahon, Peter (Preston, S.) Richard, Ivor Zilliacus, K.
Mahon, Simon (Bootle) Roberts, Albert (Normanton)
Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg) Roberts Gwilym (Bedfordshire, S.) TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Mr. Grey and Mr. Gourlay.
Davidson,James(Aberdeenshire,W.) Steel, David (Roxburgh)
Grimond, Rt. Hn. J. Thorpe, Jeremy TELLERS FOR THE NOES:
Hooson, Emlyn Wainwright, Richard (Caine Valley) Mr. Lubbock and Mr. Bessell.
Pardoe, J. Winstanley, Dr. M. P.